Monday, July 15, 2013

Postage Tips for Non-Standard Cards

Hi. One of my first posts for this blog was called Card Shape Matters - A Brief Postal Primer. In that post, I talked about card size and how the U.S. post office determines the postal rate. I also talked about the aspect ratio formula to figure out whether a card needs extra postage.

Today, I visited the post office and received additional information.  The card I mailed today is from yesterday's post. It is 6x6 in size and features a paper flower with an inflexible center. The postal rate was 86 cents; here's why.  First, the card weighed 1.1 ounces, which exceeded the 1 ounce limit for regular postage; that cost an extra 20 cents.

Second, the card was non-machinable for two reasons: (1) It didn't meet the aspect ratio of 1.3 to 2.5 (length divided by height); and (2) the inflexible element of the flower would have created an issue if it went through the postal machines.  Although there were two issues here, non-machinable was non-machinable, so there was a single extra charge of 20 more cents.  Total?  First class postage of 46 cents, plus 20 cents for over 1 ounce, plus 20 more cents for non-machinable. Total postage was 86 cents.

Now, don't get me wrong; I didn't mind the extra postage. The important thing here is that if I hadn't gone to the post office, my recipient may not have received my card at all - or might have received it postage due.  I most definitely would have been short by at least 20 cents. Either way, that would have been bad.

Today's experience simply reinforces the fact that it's best to know the regulations. It also says that if you're interested in only regular first-class postage for your cards, stick with standard size envelopes and flat, flexible cards that can go through the post office's automated sorters.

So, how do YOU spell "dimensional"?  Ha-ha! Give me layers or just forget it!

Thanks for stopping by, and join me again for more card making and scrapbooking creations. May God bless!

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